A common response nowadays is that when the going gets rough, the tough get going as far away from the rough as possible!
I want you to consider three areas in which people give up:
1. We give up on God. The reason we give up on God, I believe, stems from an incorrect understanding of His divine purpose for our life. Some think that God’s main objective is to make us happy. When that doesn’t happen, they think, Why bother? I mean, what good is God if He is not being good to me by allowing hard times to happen? A biblical principle that helped me deal with the age-old question of why a good God allows pain to exist is this:
God’s main objective on this earth is not to make you happy but to save you.
Let that truth sink in for a moment. If you believe that’s God primary purpose is for you to be happy, then when bad things happen to you, you might question God’s plan or, even worse, His existence. On the other hand, if you believe that God’s primary desire is to save you, then everything that happens, good or bad, fits into His divine purpose for your life. This creates hope instead of despair and brings meaning instead of apathy. You will always have some questions as to why things happen, but expecting trouble helps you deal with it more effectively. Every time pain shows up in your life, you are confronted with two choices: run to or away from God. Which direction are you running these days?
A long time ago I learned a short poem that goes like this:
Living in heaven, with saints we don’t know, that would be glory.
Living on earth, with saints we know, well, that’s another story.
Relationships are messy. People don’t always come through or stay faithful or truthful. Life would be awesome if it weren’t for the people! But we were created for relationships. The devil is afraid of healthy relationships. Notice that in the Garden of Eden, he didn’t show up until there were two people, and he didn’t attack both, but only one of them. He knows that “a string of three strands doesn’t break very easily.” He knows that “one can win one thousand, but two will win ten thousand.” The reason the devil fights positive relationships in your life is that he understands the incredible power for good that they have. Who are you connecting with these days?
He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine” (Matthew 26:39).